Photo Credit: TCA - Supplied

The year of the Rabbit on the Chinese Zodiac symbolises hope this year and hope is exactly what South Africa needs.


Johannesburg, South Africa (17 February 2023) – The Chinese New Year celebrations took place on the 4th of February this year, with The Chinese Association of Gauteng hosting its annual celebration and lantern festival to honour the new year.

This year the event was hosted at Sacred Heart College and offered food stalls, crafts, Dragon and Lion Dancing and martial arts to name a few.

The year 2023 marks the Year of the Rabbit. This is a very good year, according to the Chinese Zodiac. The Rabbit is a symbol of longevity, peace, and prosperity in Chinese culture and this year will be a year of hope. People born in the year of the Rabbit are said to have qualities of vigilance, and wit, are quick-minded and ingenious.

According to the Chinese lunar calendar, this signals the beginning of spring and the start of a new year. New Year is the most celebrated Chinese holiday, observed worldwide and is marked by a week-long holiday, family reunions, and fireworks.

Similar to Christmas and Hannukah in other countries, people exchange gifts during the Spring Festival. Chinese tradition sees the exchange of New Year red envelopes with Lucky Money. The colour red symbolises luck, joy, and happiness.

Zodiac Animals and What They Mean.

There are twelve zodiac animals, and they appear in a 12-year cycle. This is the order: Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Goat, Monkey, Rooster, Dog, and Pig.

Years of the Rabbit include 2023, 2011, 1999, 1987, 1975, 1963, 1951, 1939 and 1927. However, each of these years has been different. For example, this year is the Water Rabbit.

The zodiac years are always assigned an element, which means that the Year of the Water Rabbit will only happen every 60 years. According to China Highlights, the Water Rabbit will bring hope. So this could very well be the year we find new hope for what the future holds.

The Chinese Association (TCA) of Gauteng works to connect the South African Chinese community, with the country at large. It was founded in 1903 and is the oldest Chinese association in South Africa.

“Most of our members are multi-generational South African Chinese. We look after the interests of the Chinese community whilst at the same time partnering and working together with the broader South African communities in developing a mutual understanding of each other.” 

Building on a year filled with hope, we asked Paulette Leong, the TCA English Secretary, what goals the association had for 2023. They plan to keep building on the work being done by the TCA Women’s Federation. In 2022, the federation continued major charitable drives by supporting the Woodrock Animal Rescue with donations, working with the Imbumba Foundation and Caring4Girls to get sanitary pads to Lawley Primary School in Lenasia.

Perhaps the biggest undertaking in 2022, was the donation to the Nelson Mandela Foundation towards the KwaZulu-Natal flood victims.

In working with the community, TCA hopes to continue its efforts of uniting South Africa and the Chinese community; a generational community that is often left out of South African history. This year will be the best one yet, as the association will be celebrating 120 years!

“Our hopes and goals are to reach out to the broader public to show them that the Chinese are also part of the South African Rainbow nation and some of us have been here for many generations and are proud to be South African.”

Sources: TCA / China Highlights (Linked Above)
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Tyler Leigh Vivier is a writer for Good Things Guy.

Her passion is to spread good news across South Africa with a big focus on environmental issues, animal welfare and social upliftment. Outside of Good Things Guy, she is an avid reader and lover of tea.

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